Florida Statute of Limitations
If you are the victim of an accident that caused you injury, the most important thing you can do is contact an experienced Florida personal injury attorney. This cannot be stressed enough: time is of essence. Even if you don’t think your injuries are serious enough to file a claim, talk to a lawyer anyways – it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
Statute of Limitations
A statute of limitations is a timeframe in which you must file a lawsuit if you intend to seek damages for an injury. If you try to file a suit after the statute of limitations has expired, you will be turned away. Even if it is clear that the other party was negligent and the cause of your injuries, and regardless of how serious your injuries are, if you miss the statute of limitations you no longer have the right to sue. The best way to ensure you know the exact time limitations on your right to sue is to speak to a Florida personal injury attorney.
According to the State of Florida civil code section 95.11, the statute of limitations to bring a personal injury lawsuit is four years. This "countdown" starts generally starts on the date the accident occurs (note the word accident, not injury). However, there are exceptions the rule. For instance, for medical malpractice cases, Florida imposes a two year statute of limitations. Likewise, for wrongful death cases, the Florida statute of limitations is two years. For everything else – automobile accidents, dog bites, slip and falls – the statute of limitations is four years from the time the accident happens.
That being said, there is one other important exception to understand, popularly known as the Discovery Rule. Remember above mentioning the difference between accident and injury? What if you don’t realize you are injured until year later – is your case then blocked by the statute of limitations? According to the discovery rule, you can file a suit within a certain period after you discovered the injury – or reasonably should have discovered the injury. Do note however, the Discovery Rule has limited application, so it is always important you seek the advice of a Florida personal injury attorney.
To learn more about Florida personal injury law and how the statute of limitations could affect your right to sue, contact Florida personal injury lawyer James O. Cunningham. Call today for your free initial consultation at 877-FL-INJURY (877-354-6587).
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